Eric Greitens, the disgraced former Republican governor of Missouri, announced Monday he is running for Senate next year.
Greitens, who resigned in the middle of his term following allegations that he sexually assaulted a woman, became the first prominent Republican to enter the race to replace GOP Sen. Roy Blunt, who announced earlier this month he would not seek a third term.
“I have been so encouraged by the people of Missouri that I’m happy to announce tonight that I am running for the United States Senate to continue serving the people of Missouri,” Greitens said during the interview on Fox News Channel.
The prospect of Greitens’ campaign has alarmed Republicans who fear he could put the otherwise safe Republican seat in jeopardy if he wins a crowded and split primary.
Several other Republicans are considering bids, including state Attorney General Eric Schmitt and state Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick, and Reps. Vicky Hartzler, Jason Smith and Ann Wagner. Two state officials, Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe said they will not run.
Several Democrats are running, including former state Sen. Scott Sifton, Marine veteran Lucas Kunce and activist Tim Shepard.